SSR-99: A milled Bulgarian AK produced in the United States

Eric Sof

The SSR-99 is a milled U.S.-made AK produced by Global Trades. The rifle has a milled receiver similar to that of the SLR-95. The rifles are made from Bulgarian parts shipped to the US and are installed on Bulgarian receivers, which are finished in the US.

Design

The rifle features the official Bulgarian furniture (except pistol grip); they do not use cheap American-made furniture. Aslant muzzle break is tack welded onto the gun’s muzzle to comply with BATF regulations. The SSR-99 also has two recoil buffers that prolong the life of your rifle. The rifle is technically American-made by using American-made parts, which allow the rifle to have a detachable magazine and pistol grip.

The US parts include Hammer, Trigger, Disconnector, Pistol Grip, and Muzzle Brake. These rifles will accept all AK-47 magazines, including drums. The rifle is shipped with a gun lock, two 5 round magazines, a cleaning kit, sling, and documentation. Please note these rifles are in pre-ban configuration; they are not true pre-ban rifles. If you have any questions, please check state and federal laws. Global Trades is out of SSR-99s and doesn’t plan on making any more.

Global Trades SSR-99 Milled AK Rifle
Milled AK rifle SSR-99 (Photo: XY)

The SSR-99 is a lovely-looking AK variant. It comes in a nice box with a very good manual, gun lock, cleaning kit, sling, and two five-round waffle magazines. A nice extra is a signed statement saying the gun is legal with all current ATF laws in its current configuration. This should ease some worries for people that aren’t up with the complicated laws on these rifles.

The US-made pistol grip matches the rest of the stock set perfectly, unlike many other US parts guns currently on the market. The pistol grip also has an Arsenal logo for a splash of color. The muzzle brake is the standard slant variety found on many AKs. It is threaded on the barrel but spot welded on for legal reasons. A gunsmith should be able to remove this brake and put on another as long as it is also welded on, and preferably US-made so that you do not need US magazine parts.

AK milled rifle SSR-99 produced in the United States
AK milled rifle SSR-99 (Photo: XY)

User Experience

At the range, the gun performed very well. Like most AK stocks, the pull was a little short. Since the stock is Bulgarian and not U.S.-made, you can change it out for any other that meets your needs. I’ve seen +2 Bulgarian stocks for sale in some publications. The gunshot left 6 inches high 6 inches by the iron sights at 50 yards. This can easily be fixed with some adjustment by a sight tool. In talking with Arsenal, they went over how they bore the guns in at the factory. Since they do not shoot them at a range for accuracy, they can not get much closer than 6 inches.

They did say. However, they are working on some changes to try and get the accuracy closer in the future. The recoil was excellent. Included with the rifle are two different recoil buffers. One is the very popular and effective Buffer Technologies buffer. I have these in my Valmet and HK91, and they work very well. The second buffer is a Sprinco buffer. It fits in the back of the spring rod. Be careful not to lose it! The combination of these two buffers helps.

YouTube video

My only complaint about the SSR-99 is the finish, which is just my opinion. I like the painted finish of my SLR-95 better than the parkarization of the SSR-99. It is my understanding that the SLR-95s were parkarized later on. There was one spot on the rifle where the parkarization did not seem to take. Arsenal has said they have finalized their refinishing process, and it is better than ever now. They offered to refinish my early rifle for free, and I plan to take them up on it. I’ll report back what I find.

Technical specifications

Manufacturer:Three companies cooperated on SSR-99 rifle: Arsenal USA/Global Trades, Gordon Technologies from the United States, and ARSENAL JSCompany from Bulgaria
Type: gas-operated, semi-auto, or selective fire
Caliber:7.62x39mm
Barrel:420 mm
Weight:3.5 kg
Magazine capacity:30 rounds magazines
Cyclic rate of fire:
Price:$1,200 (collection site – March, 2022)

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